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Found 82 results for the keyword ‘Alternative’

  • ARE EARTH-SHELTERED HOUSES PRACTICAL IN CANADA?

    Although some experimentation with earth sheltering (burying part of the house underground) is going on in Canada, our soil conditions and frost penetrations make this type of insulation uneconomical. Most earth-sheltered homes are found in the middle and southern areas of the US, where it is us...
  • Alternatives for bathroom supplemental heating.

    Need a little more heat in the bathroom? Here is a quick run-through of some of the possibilities for supplemental heating for this small room.You are probably familiar with ceiling mounted heat lamps, usually red. Are you aware that they now have "white" heat lamp bulbs as you see in the secon...
  • Are "Thermal Mass" wall mounted electrical radiant heaters worth the money?

    "I HAVE RECENTLY RECEIVED A BROCHURE CONCERNING A SUPPOSED NEW KIND OF HEATING WHICH IS SUPPOSED TO BE CHEAPER AND MORE EFFECIENT...CAN YOU GIVE YOUR ASSESSMENT OF THIS PRODUCT AND THE PROS AND CONS ?" -- Grant, MontrealThere is currently a marketing blitz from the company Echotherm Canada, sell...
  • What kind of joists do I prefer?

    Mila from Ottawa, Ontario writes: "We are buying a new home and have a choice of 2" x 10" solid wood kiln-dried joists or "Trust Joists" (JLE) Pre-engineered floor system. If you were buying a house for yourself -- which would you choose?"I just love it when people try to nail me down like that,...
  • Commercial "back out" toilets for basements.

    Jeff in Ottawa, Ontario wanted to put a toilet in his basement but was worried about the slope required from the toilet exit to the floor drain. He was even looking at an expensive toilet pump.One easy solution for basement toilets is often overlooked. Drilling through a concrete floor is never...
  • Storage Ideas -- home made and commercial

    Tom from Toronto has made 'door storage' by simply suspending old doors from the ceiling or the wall, as you can see in the first two photos above.Then there is the home made "free form" drawer that you thought was condemed when you put a sink in front of the drawer front.  The bottom of the draw...
  • A new Pivoting "P" trap for under the sink.

    Don't you just hate trying to line up all the PVC pieces in a sink drain? Wouldn't it be so nice if there was just a little bit of flexibility someplace in the drain line? After all, we did finally elminate the rigid speedways to get those great flexible ones that don't collapse.Well the compan...
  • Gas logs in an old fireplace

    Greg Costelloe from Costelloe & Company in Concord, Ontario, is one of those innovative fireplace experts that I love to talk to. In the first photo, he is showing me a standard direct vent gas fireplace insert. This is the kind of unit that you can build a fake fireplace around, or you can...
  • Combo mechanical systems - AIMS

    Over the years we have worked on perfecting each piece of our house. We have gotten the walls and windows pretty good, and have a lot of good mechanical devices as well, but several years ago Natural Resources Canada decided to help several manufacturers to get together and see if they could not...
  • Old Growth lumber, from the bottom of the river!

    How do you get floor boards or cabinet making lumber from old growth trees without cutting a single tree out of the old growth forests? You pull it up off the bottom of the Ottawa River and its tributaries and mill it at "Logs End" near Bristol, Quebec.Those where the major waterways where the b...